In Our Gallery with John Olsen

A school of fish made of upcycled metal has found a home in the Here + Now exhibition, with John Olsen's art focusing on the observation and protection of marine species.

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How long have you been an artist?

I have been an artist since the year 1988.

Tell us about your artwork displayed by Bundaberg Regional Galleries as part of the Here + Now exhibition?

The pieces chosen were selected as a school of fish.

The works are in a variety of stainless or titanium fin plates with high grade steel ball bearings used for eyes. 

What was the inspiration behind this piece?

The work is primarily to capture lifelike images of the species as we travel through the ongoing saga of climate change.  

The inspiration is for ongoing monitoring and thus increased protection measures for the species as a living unit.

What medium was used and how does this reflect your usual practice?

The medium used consists of recycled metals.

So many scrap metal stockpiles are dwindling by the day as they are shipped off to china as high quality steel for recycling materials, only to be returned to Australia as refrigerators.

We need to better utilise the high grade materials within our own country.

What do you love most about what you do?

It’s the peace and reflection time and the totally free-up of the mind that captures the soul.

What advice would you give to others who are just beginning to explore art?

My best advice is work hard, work often, be brave and follow the heart. 

It’s a wonderful journey.

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